Runaway with Words: Poems from Florida's Youth Shelters edited by Joann Gardner


Written by participants in the Runaway with Words program, these poems take us into the domain of runaway, abused, and abandoned, teenagers. We emerge from these pages with a new understanding of their lives, an appreciation for the resiliency of the human spirit, and a growing respect for the creative abilities of these marginalized youth.


As I Watch

As I watch a little boy
shy from a woman who gives warmth,
I watch with sorrow
in my eyes.

As I watch a woman
spill the blood of another,
I cry.

As I watch the boy try
but never succeed
to flee from his monster,
I watch with fright.

As I watch from a window
a little boy fails to fight back
and dies.

As I watch with sad eyes,
I turn from this window
to forget what has happened.
--Kathy, PACE Center for Girls, Orlando

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